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October 8, 2014

Fighting Wonga with the wrong weapons

A battle for the heart and soul of the credit union movement is underway, with Department for Work and Pensions leading the attack with substantial incentives on offer if credit unions will agree to move into that part of the financial services market where the pay-day lenders currently have a free run.  But many believe it would spell the end of community based credit unions – reducing them to nothing more than automated lending machines, shoe-horned into the sub-prime space vacated by mainstream banks. They are much more than that.



Dermot O''Neill, SLCU

Scottish League of Credit Unions

What we are:

31 Credit Unions, 34,000 Adult members , 8,000 Junior members , £32 million in Savings, £21 million in Loans

The strength of the Scottish League of Credit Unions is in supporting community-focused

Credit Unions, at whatever stage of development is deemed appropriate by the members

of each Credit Union. We recognise and respect the different needs and aspirations of

individual Credit Unions and we do not seek to impose any particular model or

developmental path.


Our core purpose is to ensure that our member Credit Unions become and remain: Compliant, Sustainable and Ethical

We do this by focusing on the key themes of:

Education through on-site & group training sessions using ready-made materials or bespoke solutions

Advice on legislative, regulatory, compliance and financial issues and considerations

Networking by encouraging formal & informal contact between member CU’s, their volunteers and staff

Facilitation where member Credit Unions wish to co-ordinate or work together to achieve common goals

Representation to Regulators, Local, Scottish & UK Government, other CU organisations and the media

Promotion by developing branding & advertising material templates that can be customised by CU’s

To read SLCU’s response to the HM Treasury please click here